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What's the Big Deal About Avocados?

by  CN Team on July 01, 2014
What's the Big Deal About Avocados?

If you are like me and you dine out from time to time or love to cook, then I know you have seen avocados bursting upon the scene in 2014.   They are everywhere and an option on so many menus that we had to explore it.

Many people look at avocados and think it’s a vegetable but in actuality it is a fruit.  There are over 80 species of avocados around the world.   In the United States, we primarily eat two types.  They are grown in California and in Florida.  The most common is the Haas Avocado in California.  This avocado has the bumpy alligator like skin.   Avocados from Florida have a smoother skin.  California produces almost 90% of the avocados in for the country.

Avocados are good sources of vitamin A,C, E, K, and B6.  It also a great source of potassium, and folate.  Avocados are also good sources of heart healthy fats. It has also been shown that antioxidants are absorbed better with avocados.  

Avocados are used in salads and other foods.  Most commonly avocado is used to make guacamole.   In America, we consume a large amount of guacamole.  During Super Bowl Sunday, we consume over 50 million pounds of guacamole.   I love guacamole and wanted to share my favorite guacamole and chip recipes with you.  Go to the Chef's Corner for this recipe for Pineapple Guacamole and Salt Less Chips.  The combination of pineapple and avocado with the smoked jalapeño is amazing. The recipe comes courtesy of Chef Dominick Hayman.

Chef Dominick is currently an Area Executive Chef with SFE (Southwest Foodservice Excellence) a company that provides K-12 foodservice, with an emphasis on nutrition and innovation.  Dominick also serves as the Food Safety Coordinator for SFE. He is a graduate of Johnson & Wales University with a degree in Culinary Nutrition; he’s studied Mediterranean Cuisine abroad in Florence, Italy and gained his MS in Human Nutrition from University of Delaware in 2013. 2013 seemed to be a good year for him as he was the 1st place winner in the First Black Culinary Expo’s Chef Cook-off and his winning recipe for Ponzu Spiced Short Ribs was published in the Savoring the Shore Cookbook with proceeds to benefit recovery for Hurricane Sandy.

His commitment to food, quality and life resonate in his mantra, “Making the food you eat to live, the food you live to eat!”

Enjoy the Chocolate Avocado Ice Cream recipe below.  This is a sweet and savory ice cream.  What I love about this recipe is that it’s quick and you don't have to cool the mixture before freezing it.

Chocolate Avocado Ice Cream
Recipe courtesy Chef Dominick Hayman

INGREDIENTS

2 ripe Hass avocados
1 can coconut milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 cup chocolate syrup
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 - 1 teaspoon Kahlua
pinch of salt
toasted coconut, for garnish

PREPARATION

1. Halve the avocados and remove the pit. Scoop out the flesh and put it in a blender or the bowl of a food processor.

2. Add the coconut milk, chocolate syrup, heavy cream, sugar, kahlua, and salt, and puree until completely smooth. Chill the mixture thoroughly.

3. Once chilled, freeze in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Serve scoops garnished with toasted coconut.

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